In today’s Sports News: the Czech football Gambrinus Liga restarts after the winter break; Slavia Prague lose to Tottenham Hotspur in the UEFA Cup, a cross-country skiing World Cup event takes place in Liberec, with Czech Lukáš Bauer reaching the podium; and the Czech hockey Extraliga’s regular season is almost over.
It was meant to be a big day for Czech skiing but now it looks more like an international fiasco. This weekend, the north Bohemian village of Vesec is due to host a World Cup event in cross-country skiing, but its organizers were up against a last minute hitch: there was no snow on the track. Instead of calling the event off, they decided to transport some ten cubic metres of snow from the Jizera Mountains, aggravating both nature conservationists and the public. I spoke to Jakub Kašpar from the Environment Ministry and asked him what exactly went
In tennis, the Czech Republic have booked a safe passage to the Davis Cup quarterfinals by beating Belgium; cross-country star Lukáš Bauer wins classic 15 km to add to commanding lead in World Cup standings; Czechs finish last in Euro Hockey Tour; a TV crew is robbed during World Cup ski jumping event.
In Sports News this Monday: the Czech women’s team hold their nerve to overcome Slovakia in the last match of a Fed Cup tie in Brno; another season, another World Cup medal for speed skater Martina Sáblíková; footballer Martin Fenin makes a dream start for Eintracht Frankfurt, scoring a career-first hat-trick on his Bundesliga debut; and the Czech national team are in Cyprus for two friendlies – minus ill manager Karel Bruckner.
The figure skater Tomáš Verner has been all over the Czech media since last week taking the Czech Republic’s first European men’s gold medal in 16 years. A year ago he had led the field in the European Figure Skating Championships after the short programme on day one, but ended up finishing second after surrendering his lead on day two. When I spoke to Tomáš Verner (21) on his return to Prague, he told me what the difference had been this time out.
The 2008/2009 National Hockey League season will open in Prague and Stockholm next October. While the Swedish capital will see two games between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Ottawa Senators, hockey fans in Prague are in for a one-off treat. Jaromír Jágr, the most brilliant Czech star in the NHL and the captain of the New York Rangers, will lead his team in two matches against Tampa Bay at Prague’s Sazka Arena.
In Sports News this week: Zdeněk Štybar finishes second in the Cyclo-cross World Championships in Italy; Milan Baroš is hoping a move to Portsmouth will mean regular first-team action ahead of football’s European Championship; Athens silver medallist in yachting Lenka Šmídová this week has one last chance to reach the Beijing Olympics; and the Czech Republic’s lady’s tennis team are preparing to face Slovakia in the Fed Cup in Brno.
In Sports News this week: the biggest Czech hopes Nicole Vaidišová and Tomáš Berdych are both beaten in the fourth round of the Australian Open by the competition’s reigning women’s and men’s champions; the agent of footballer Milan Baroš says Portsmouth are strongly interested in the striker, while Brno midfielder Luboš Kalouda could be on his way to Juventus, no less.
Czech women’s basketball is on the rise. The national team, currently ranking 10th in the world, won the European Championship in 2005. Two teams from the Trocal Women’s League regularly participate in Euroleague, Europe’s most prestigious club competition, and one of them – Gambrinus Sika Brno – even won the entire event in 2006. With more international success, more international players have come to the Czech women’s basketball league – roughly 20 foreigners are on the line-ups of the 10 first division clubs this year. One of them, playing for